“We have chosen you to be our Queen, for never before have we seen such physical and intellectual beauty amongst living beings. You are the Chosen One – come and live with us in Omalas, our beautiful city.”
I suppose I should begin my miserable tale by telling you how I got here in the first place. A long time ago – or at least it feels like a long time ago – I was taken from a lower plane: a planet called Earth.
I remember it well: I was walking along an empty road, gazing up at the thick white clouds that filled the sky that day. As I was gazing, an opening formed in the clouds, making a sort of portal, and I was dragged up into the air, unable to resist, towards that portal from which bright white light was issuing.
On the other side, I found myself in the centre of a large circular room. There were long windows all around, through which the purest light came pouring in and illuminating the white walls and floor.
Sitting in front of me, in a semi-circle of ornate and richly patterned silver thrones, were eleven men and women, all beautiful in appearance, wearing long and flowing white robes. Looking down, I saw that I too was wearing a white robe.
The man who sat in the centre of the semi-circle was the most exquisite being I have ever seen. His name, he said, was Lord Vertigo, and he was the leader of the Council of Omalas. I wish I could adequately describe to you his beauty, for such I have never seen. He had long, straight hair and high cheekbones.
But the colour of his eyes and hair were impossible to describe, as they always seemed to change. I hold his image in my heart always, and I hope that one day I will see him again.
But more of him later; I will move on with my story now. Lord Vertigo, the leader of the Council, said to me:
“We have chosen you to be our Queen, for never before have we seen such physical and intellectual beauty amongst living beings. It would be a shame for you to stay on such a lesser plane. You are the Chosen One – come and live with us in Omalas, our beautiful city. You shall be granted the gift of everlasting life, and have a palace of your own, and all the friends and lovers you’ve ever imagined. Come, live with us, and be our Queen.”
The way he spoke was supremely elegant, and his propositions irresistible. Of course, I was a little surprised to be spoken so highly of by such a creature as he, but naturally I accepted the offer, and requested that Lord Vertigo would visit me in my new palace.
I was transported to my new home in a golden chariot drawn by four horses. The city itself was grand and imposing, with huge white buildings that resembled seashells in their beauty and intricacy. The roads were wide and cobbled with stones that sparkled in the sunlight. The citizens of Omalas were otherworldly with their colourful robes and radiant faces. Youth and beauty abounded; of age and ugliness, there was nothing to be seen.
The grounds of my palace were entered through high golden gates, and then I was taken up a long and winding drive that appeared to be made of marble, snaking its way through a lawn of lush green grass. My palace shone like a pearl in the perfect pristine sunlight.
Inside, it was exquisite in every detail, from the master bedroom, presided over by a king-size four-poster bed; to the white marble bathroom, in which the bath had the dimensions of a small swimming pool; to the banqueting hall, filled with huge oak tables laden with all the food and drink you could imagine.
I revelled in my palace and my new-found glory. I twirled around and around in my cavernous ballroom, laughing with glee. All of this was meant for me. I suppose I’d always known, secretly, that I was the Chosen One.
I was glorious, I was decadent, I was truly alive! I threw masquerade balls and dinner parties; I surrounded myself with servants and courtiers, Lords and Ladies of the highest distinction. Two sleek black dogs followed me everywhere; they were my favourite companions of all.
I carried a looking-glass with me at all times so I could admire my beauty; this city was fair, and so were the people in it, but I was the fairest of them all, for I was the Queen.
In short, I had everything I had ever wanted, but for one thing, one thing in which I couldn’t seem to get my way. I couldn’t get the image of Lord Vertigo out of my mind, and I desired no other man, no matter how many eligible suitors I had. Many nights I implored for his company; I sent him letters by dove, but to none of these did he reply.
So, one day, I left my palace and made my way to the Council building in my horse-drawn chariot…
To be continued…
(P.S. Happy New Year to all my readers!)